Arrows – Hastings Pier 23rd August 1975

ad supplied by Sarah Harvey

Sarah Harvey… This day August 23rd, 1975. The Arrows at Hastings Pier. Also take a look at next week….Joe Loss and his Orchestra….not to mention the wrestling legend Mick McManus.

Mick O’Dowd… Worked on this one. The Arrows were a real nice wholesome bunch of americans & a pleasure to meet.

Mark Randall… I have a feeling that the Randall tribe, led by ol’ Ma Randall were at the wrestling match

Alan Esdaile… Above is the promo photo I still got, when we worked with the band. They also had the original hit with I love rock n roll which went on to be a bigger hit for Joan Jett.

Mark Randall… I recall their 4:25 pm TV show

Peter Fairless… They loved rock’n’roll, you know?

Alan Esdaile… Everyone thinks that Joan Jett’s version was the original Peter but this came out a few years earlier and I’m sure Arrows wrote it.

Peter Fairless… Yes, Alan, it was written by Arrows bandmates, Alan Merrill and Jake Hooker, originally as a ‘B’ side but, as so often in those days, it got flipped. They had two big hits, the other was ‘Touch Too Much’, Although they were on RAK, I always thought they were a serious act.

Jon Martin… I was there then

Liz Turner… So was i

Julie Morris… Me too!

Jo Turner… Yup I was with Liz Turner

Liz Turner… Why on earth did I fancy them!!

Julie Morris… Lead singer was very pretty Liz! Just looked up – the other two are dead!

Andy Qunta… Actually I’m more impressed with the wrestling bill! (No offence to the Arrows of course!)

Alan Esdaile… Perhaps Smokie cancelled as they were not happy with their name being spelt wrong.

Spooky Tooth – Hastings Pier 6th July 1968

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supplied by Sarah Harvey

Sarah Harvey… Spooky Tooth formed in October 1967 and played on the pier on July 6th, 1968. 1969’s Spooky Two LP was the last album release by the original lineup. It included the song “Better By You, Better Than Me”, which was covered by Judas Priest on their 1978 release Stained Class. Many different line-ups for Spooky Tooth but after the original lin-up split in 1970, the band reformed in September 1972 with a different line-up. The best known member of these line-ups (from March 1973 to September 1974) was Mick Jones (guitar / vocals), later in Foreigner. Also from February — May 1974, Mike Patto (vocals) who replaced Harrison for the 1974 release The Mirror. The group then split again in November 1974.

Alan Esdaile… I remember Die Laughing doing a great version of Better By You Better Than Me.

Mick O’Dowd… I’ve only just caught up with them i’m afraid to say. Their version of “I Am The Walrus” is a blaster and being a bit of a “purist” that is saying something.

John Storer… Sarah, you forgot to mention Gary Wright …. he was the principal songwriter, went on to have a worldwide solo hit with “Dream Weaver” and reformed the band in 2004 for a successful tour. He has also been one of the mainstays of Ringo Starr’s backing band

Sarah Harvey… Hey John…..good spot! Sorry for the omission. Will be doing a Spooky compilation on my Hastings Pier Music Show in the early Spring. 🙂

Nigel Ford… And what about Bassist Greg Ridley, ‘ went on to join Humble Pie at the request of Steve Marriott! “Better by Better than me” was also in the set done by Maidstone band Krishna Kudu at the Battle dances.

Robert Searle… Did anyone mention Luther Grosvener,i think thats how you spell his name,on lead guitar. He left to join Mott the Hoople as Ariel Bender..

Bernard Tiltman… I can’t remember Spooky Tooth at Hastings Pier but I can remember them playing Hastings College. I was there from 1965 to 1970 so it could have been anytime between 67-70. Still remember them as one of the best if not the best live bands I have ever seen.

Read moreSpooky Tooth – Hastings Pier 6th July 1968

More from Samisen 1976

Sarah Harvey… I have received some lovely comments about the recording I made with my first band Samisen, which is really nice….so here is another one from my musical past and another from the 1970s….I am often quite shy about posting these things up because I ain’t one for making a song and dance about things…. but here goes anyway! I definitely wrote the main riff for this one!! Its another prog rock offering, this time an instrumental and a prog thrashy one called ‘Commercial Cash-In’. Another one that I may re-work one day and perhaps perform…. if I can find anyone who wants a go at it. Its SAMISEN again. I think this one was recorded at Ore Centre in 1976!! ‘I have no idea why I called it ‘Commercial Cash-In’. Its prog rock….. what do you expect…. anything goes
– Sarah Harvey (Lead Guitar – Happy Maureens)
– Ralphy (Rhythm Guitar and backing vocals)
– Bernie Smirnoff (Drums – Kingbathmat)
– Conan Howard (Bass Guitar)
Just remember, its 1976…. reel-to-reel tape…. I am still proud of it and love the people I have been in down the years, and proud of the band I currently play with, The Happy Maureens.

Pete Fisher… sounds great Sarah! The wonders of reel to reel tape! Sounds similar to the recordings I did on reel to reel back in ’72-’74 – that wonderful rehearsal room reverb, and of course the same noisy drummer…some great guitar happening here too though…a real feast of good riffs!

Sarah Harvey… Thanks Pete. Coincidentally I thought about you and Pueblo playing in the 70s. My current band this weekend have been asked to play at Bexhill Community centre at a function in October and my thoughts went back to you Roger Carey and Bernie playing there at their Youth Club. Really happy memories and some great tunes you played along with some great musicianship, not always appreciated by the youthful attendees that night…… but I loved it

Pete Fisher… You’re welcome Sarah! Nice that you have such good memories of us back then…we were a very raw outfit, probably under-rehearsed and still lacking confidence in front of audiences – lot of strong competition around back then…I actually still have a “little red book” full of lyrics and chord charts, but also a kind of gig diary for Mae West and Pueblo. When I get a few spare minutes I’ll scan it and post it here!

Conan Howard… Conan here, I seem to remember this tune went on for at least 20 minutes , with slow bits and fast bits.. what a journey that number was at the time. probably a good idea to wind it up short of the ejaculation point

A Brief History of Samisen by Sarah Harvey

Sarah Harvey… A brief history of Samisen. Thank you Peter Thomson for providing this rare recording playing live during the 1970s. This is a video featuring local Hastings band Samisen who played in the area during the latter part of the 1970s. It tells of a brief history behind the band and includes a rare recording of them playing live. The venue of the recording is unknown as is the line-up of the recording but it is thought to be, Graham Barratt on vocals, Dave Shirley on lead guitar, Bernard Jeffery on drums and Steve Turner on bass.

Alan Esdaile… Well done Sarah, great information. The last comment made my smile, about some of us have changed over the years.

Pete Thomson…. Further to Sarah’s video accompanied by Hard Monkeys, I can confirm that the track was recorded by me on a tin-pot, little, one-track machine during a practice session at Ore Centre. I have also been in touch with Steve Turner who confirms he was the bassist at the time.

Dave Nattress… This is a wonderful little video history. Although I was vocalist in the last line-up of Samisen for a couple of years or so, I actually never knew the history of the band – thinking, when I saw Samisen a few times before I joined, they were Hastings home-grown – but not so! Even when I was in Damaris, Samisen,along with Stallion of course was a local band to look up to and after the demise of Damaris, I was delighted to audition for Samisen after Graham Barrett (RIP) left I was delighted  to get the gig. I remember all the guys well, although regretably I’ve lost touch but truly hope some of us can meet up soon. I remember all the gigs well – albeit 35 years ago!! Once we (almost) had a Summer tour – 4 gigs in about 10 days. Rehearsals at Ore Centre and at Dave Kent’s parents’ shop in Kings Road, St Leonards and support to Hat Trick at Ore Centre. Great days, re-lived again thanks to this piece of history. All power to this website, Alan Esdaile, Peter Thompson and my old friend, Sarah Harvey.

Sarah Harvey… Well I am trying (thus far in vain) to organise a reunion gig which would if nothing else be great fun. So if any of the many past Samisen members want to have a go….you know where I am! If I don’t hear from you then just remember I am a great nag-bag nowadays! 🙂

Wendy Weaver… Great video Sarah, ‘specially the last bit 😉 x

Samisen Return to Rock A Nore – The lost recordings 1976

Sarah Harvey… Recorded at THE BOX in Silverhill. Samisen ‘Rock-A-Nore’ in 1976!! The background to this song was actually based on Conan Howard’s (Bass Guitar) story about where he lost his virginity rather than any sentimental connection with the iconic Hastings area. I am a prog rocker at heart and I write songs and have done since the 1970s…..and here is the proof!! In the 1970s I wrote many prog rock songs, and most of them were in the epic prog-rock style. In those days that’s what you did as a band. One day I will rework them and perhaps perform them…. who knows. This video depicts the various line-ups of my very first band SAMISEN. The song was recorded at THE BOX in Silverhill in 1976!! ‘Rock-A-Nore’ is a prog rock piece written by Sarah Harvey and Conan Howard based on Conan’s story about where he lost his virginity rather than any sentimental connection with the iconic Hastings location.
– Graham Barrett (Vocals – RIP)
– Sarah Harvey (Lead Guitar – Happy Maureens)
– Ralphy (Rhythm Guitar and backing vocals)
– Bernie Smirnoff (Drums – Kingbathmat)
– Conan Howard (Bass Guitar)
I am proud of the songs I have written down the years

Jan Warren… Me too Sarah, I am Prog and Psychedelic Rock too, I remember meeting you at the SMART meet in Hastings, hope to meet you again soon!

Conan Howard… sorry SARAH, you only helped to write this, as it was my original idea.. CONAN HOWARD , as proved by all the bass work.. now go to the back of the class and sit on the naughty step you bad girl … love Conan x

Sarah Harvey… Conan has become such a grumpy old wotsit in his old age 😂 I did say we co-wrote it and ok, if you want the rights to the original idea I won’t get my lawyer on to you this time. 😜 xxx

Peter Thomson… Always enjoyed hearing (and watching) you lot knock this one out.

Conan Howard… must admit though Graham Barrett did come up with all the words,, good old Graham ,bless you where ever you are now. WHAT a Hoot  SARAH ,good stuff indeed . all meant in good fun.. I have the right to be grumpy at 70 years old , what else is there? love Conan xx